SEAN ARCHER PRO™ Tutorial

QUICK LINKS

INSTALLATION

 

A - REQUIRED PREP

    1 - RAW PROCESSING

    2 - PRO MASKS

    3 - RETOUCH ASSIST TOOLS

 

B - PRO SKIN RETOUCHING

    1 - NEURAL SKIN REPAIR

    2 - FREQUENCY SEPARATION

    3 - LOCAL DODGE & BURN

    4 - DEPTH CONTOURING

    5 - RED SKIN REDUCER

    6 - HOTSPOT REDUCER

    7 - PRO LIPS

    8 - PRO CHEEKS

    9 - PRO SKIN GLOW

  10 - PRO EYES

 

 

C - PRO RELIGHTING

    1 - BACKGROUND EXPOSURE

    2 - BACKGROUND LIGHTS

    3 - BACKGROUND TEXTURE

    4 - FACE LIGHT

 

D - PRO GLOBAL EFFECTS

    1 - COLOR LUTS

    2 - CROSS PROCESSING

    3 - VIGNETTES

    4 - FINISHING EFFECTS

 

E - PRO OPTIMIZE & EXPORT

    1 - DELETE HIDDEN LAYERS

    2 - PRO EXPORT FOR WEB

    3 - FLATTEN ALL

    4 - CANCEL ACTION


INSTALLATION

  1. Open Photoshop.
  2. Go to the Actions tab.
  3. Click the menu icon and select "Load Actions".
  4. Load this file: user/Sean Archer ProPortrait™/Photoshop Actions/For Photoshop v22+/SEAN ARCHER'S PRO PORTRAIT.atn
  5. Follow the instructions in REQUIRED PREP below to view in BUTTON MODE.

A - REQUIRED PREP

STEP 1 - OVERVIEW

Most of the Actions in this product require you to first run the Actions in the REQUIRED PREP group. Run each Action in this group in numbered order:

    1. RAW PROCESSING - Optimizes skin tone and luminosity
    2. PRO MASKS - Creates subject and background masks
    3. RETOUCH ASSIST TOOLS - Aids in visualizing tonal inconsistencies

STEP 2 - VIEW IN BUTTON MODE

To make our Actions easy to use, we recommend viewing them in BUTTON MODE. Click the menu icon at the top right corner of the Actions panel and select "BUTTON MODE" and then drag the side of the Actions panel to adjust its width until the buttons line up vertically (see below).


A1 - RAW PROCESSING

STEP 1 - IMPORT REFERENCE FILE

  1. Find the included jpg file called “archer_face_reference.jpg”
  2. It should be located in the original downloaded folder:
    username/Sean Archer ProPortrait™/Photoshop Actions/Reference Files/archer_face_reference.jpg
  3. After it appears in your file, click the “enter” key on Windows, or the “return” key on Mac to place it.
  4. READY TO DO IT? Click Continue so you can execute these instructions.

STEP 2 - BALANCE SKIN TONE & LUMINOSITY

Adjust the Camera Raw Filter to get a nice luminosity balance as well as great skin tone.

  • To balance luminosity of your image, try hitting AUTO in the EDIT section then adjust sliders to taste.
  • For great skin tone, start by clicking the White Balance Eyedropper Tool (I) on an area in the image that should be neutral gray.
  • If you need to manually adjust White Balance to get great skin tone, see the image below.

MANUALLY OPTIMIZE SKIN TONE

  1. Start by measuring skin tone by positioning the curser over the skin.
  2. Note the RGB values in the Histogram.
  3. Ideal skin color values are when Red is the highest value, Blue is the lowest value and Green right in between them. Stated as a formula: (Red Value + Blue Value) ÷ 2 = Green Value.
  4. Under White Balance, try adjusting the Temp and Tint settings until your color values are close to this formula.
  5. Position the Camera Raw window to the side or below the main window to compare your adjustments to the reference faces behind it.
  6. Click Continue so you can execute these instructions.

STEP 3 - RAW PROCESSING COMPLETED!

  1. Keep the RAW PROCESSED smart layer below any layers that have effects or adjustments that you want to apply individually.
  2. You can edit the original image by double-clicking the RAW PROCESSED smart layer, editing it, saving it, and closing it.
  3. You can adjust the Camera Raw settings non-destructively by double-clicking the Camera Raw Filter just below your RAW PROCESSED layer.
  4. At any time, you can refer to Sean Archer’s reference images just by making the archer_face_reference layer visible and bringing it up to the top of the layers.
  5. When you are done with this step, you're ready to move on to the next Action!

A2 - PRO MASKS

STEP 1 - CREATE SUBJECT & BACKGROUND MASKS

  1. Click Continue to open the "Select and Mask" window.
  2. Click (v) to View in Overlay Mode.
  3. Click (r) for the Refine Edge Brush to clean up around the hair and edges.
  4. When the mask looks good click OK.
  5. For an in-depth tutorial on the "Select and Mask" tool go to: http://bit.ly/masks22.

STEP 2 - CHECK YOUR MASK

    1. Review your mask around the edges of your subject
    2. If your mask needs cleaning up, use a brush to paint around the edges of your subject
    3. A WHITE brush adds to the subject, a BLACK brush takes away from the subject
    4. When you are done with this step click the PLAY button (►) at the bottom of the Actions panel or if your Action panel is in “Button Mode” click the HIGHLIGHTED RED BUTTON.

STEP 3 - SUBJECT & BACKGROUND MASKS CREATED!

  1. Your masks have been placed in a group called PRO MASKS at the bottom of your Layers.
  2. They will be needed by the Actions that come after this Action.
  3. You can quickly make a selection from them: 
    1. On Mac press “Cmd” + Mask (see red outline)
    2. On PC press “Windows” + Mask (see red outline)
  4. You're ready to move on to the next Action!

A3 - RETOUCH ASSIST TOOLS

USING RETOUCH ASSIST TOOLS

  1. You can use this group for FREQUENCY SEPARATION, LOCAL DODGE & BURN & DEPTH CONTOURING.
  2. These tools are designed to help you see inconsistencies in skin texture, luminosity and transitions.
  3. Always keep this group at the top when retouching.
  4. Keep the B&W group on when using this tool.
  5. Select each of the Contrast Layers to zero in on transitions between Highlights, Mids and Shadows.
  6. Turn on and off these layers to identify areas that need to be retouched.
  7. Turn on and off the Face Topography to reveal shapes of transitions you may want to smooth out.
  8. When you are done retouching, you can delete this group

USING THE CONTRAST LAYERS IN RETOUCH ASSIST TOOLS

  1. To make the subject look beautiful, the retouching goal is to create soft, smooth transitions between shadows and highlights.
  2. Contrast Layers help you see irregular transitions.
  3. For each Contrast Layer, try turning on and off Face Topography - this helps you see the transitions easier and look for irregularities.
  4. Depending if you are working between highlights and midtowns, or midtones and shadows, you can select the different Contrast Layers to see the transitions.
  5. You may also want to tweak the Contrast Adjustment Layers to best isolate transitions (see below).

B - PRO SKIN RETOUCHING

  1. The Actions included in this group are designed to give you a comprehensive workflow for retouching skin.
  2. For problematic skin, run all the Actions sequentially.
  3. Each of the Actions in this group take a different approach to skin repair - as you become familiar with them, you will be able to decide which to use selectively for less problematic skin issues.
  4. After you work through all the Actions in this group and you’ve selected the adjustment layers you like, you may want to run “DELETE HIDDEN LAYERS” below to conserve disk space and file size.

B1 - NEURAL SKIN REPAIR

**PHOTOSHOP VERSION 22+ IS NEEDED TO RUN THIS ACTION

If you are using an older version of Photoshop, skip this action. In addition, you will also need the following prior to running this action:

    1. Run the RAW PROCESSING Action. If you need to run RAW PROCESSING, click Stop, and run that Action first.
    2. NEURAL FILTER must be installed. If you need to install NEURAL FILTER, click Stop and follow these instructions:
      1. Go to Filter > Neural Filters and click Install.
      2. Then download the Skin Smoothing filter by clicking the cloud icon.
      3. Then click the filter Cancel button within Neural Filters without turning on any blue switches.
      4. Return to this action and re-run from the start.

ADJUST SKIN SMOOTHING WITH NEURAL FILTER

  1. By default the action applies a moderate amount of Skin Smoothing but you can adjust if desired.
  2. Add or subtract the settings for Blur and Smoothing to achieve the best results.
  3. Be careful, too much can make the subject look to over-processed. 
  4. Make sure the Output is set to “Smart Filter”.
  5. We’ve included more tools to improve skin so be conservative with the amount of effect you apply in this step.
  6. Remember, at any time you can double-click Neural Filters under the Processed Original layer to make adjustments later.
  7. If your subject has good skin (as does the subject below), you might want to skip this Action or simply turn off the Effect under the RAW PROCESSED layer after you run it.

ADJUST OPACITY OF NEURAL FILTER

Control the intensity of the effect by adjusting its opacity.

NEURAL SKIN REPAIR COMPLETE!

  1. Remember, at any time you can double-click Neural Filters under the Processed Original layer to make adjustments later.
  2. You're ready to move on to the next Action!

B2 - FREQUENCY SEPARATION

PRIOR ACTIONS REQUIRED FOR THIS ACTION

  1. This Action requires you to first run the PRO MASKS & RETOUCH ASSIST actions. It also needs a main image layer named “RAW PROCESSED” (created by the RAW PROCESSING action)

  2. If you haven’t run these Actions, click Stop, run the Actions and then return to this Action.

  3. If you’ve already run them click Continue.

STEP 1 - DETERMINE YOUR MAGIC NUMBER

  1. To get your MAGIC NUMBER you have to measure the pixel height of the face.
  2. Select the Marquee tool (hit the "m" key - the tool icon is a box with a dashed outline).
  3. Drag a box around your subject’s face.
  4. While dragging, pay attention to the pixel HEIGHT (H) of the face.
  5. Next, take the last 2 digits off and that's your MAGIC NUMBER.
  6. In the image below: H: 1309 px, take off the last two numbers & you get a MAGIC NUMBER of 13.
  7. Get your MAGIC NUMBER and remember it!
  8. READY TO DO IT? Click Stop to execute the above instructions

STEP 2 - ENTER YOUR MAGIC NUMBER

  1. In this next dialog box for Dust & Scratches enter your MAGIC NUMBER in the box for Radius.
  2. Leave the Threshold at 0.
  3. READY TO DO IT? Click Continue to execute the above instructions.

STEP 3 - SMOOTH OUT TONES & TRANSITIONS

  1. The image you see is slightly blurred, it will be clear after the next step when it turns on the High Frequency layer.
  2. In the Low-Frequency layer of FREQUENCY SEPARATION, select the Lasso Tool (hit the "L" key).
  3. Set FEATHER equal to your MAGIC NUMBER.
  4. Draw shapes over areas of the skin where you want to smooth out color tones.
  5. For each shape you draw, go to Filter > Blur > Gaussian Blur and use the same amount of your MAGIC NUMBER.
  6. Keep drawing shapes and blurring until you have smoothed out irregular skin tones.
  7. Be careful not to do too much or it will flatten out the subject - you can always go back and blend more later.
  8. Use the RETOUCH ASSIST TOOLS by turning them on and off to identify uneven patches of tone and luminosity which can be smoothed out with this step.
  9. READY TO DO IT? Click Stop to execute the above instructions.
  10. When you are done with this step click the PLAY button (►) at the bottom of the Actions panel or if your Action panel is in “Button Mode” click the HIGHLIGHTED RED BUTTON.

STEP 4 - SPOT HEAL BLEMISHES & STRAY HAIRS

  1. In the High-Frequency layer select the Spot Healing Brush (cycle Shift+J) or Clone Stamp Tool (cycle Shift+S).
  2. If using Clone Stamp Tool set to 100% Opacity, Flow 100%, Sample: “Curent Layer”.
  3. If using Spot Healing Tool, set to “Content-Aware” and “Sample All Layers” is OFF.
  4. Zoom in very close to see pores of the skin.
  5. RIGHT CLICK YOUR BRUSH to set the size no larger than a few pores.
  6. Set BRUSH HARDNESS TO 100% or you will lose detail in skin texture.
  7. Make small dabs, lines and/or shapes over blemishes and stray hairs.
  8. Focus mainly on the parts of the blemishes where there is the most contrast.
  9. READY TO DO IT? Click Stop to execute the above instructions.
  10. When you are done with this step click the PLAY button (►) at the bottom of the Actions panel or if your Action panel is in “Button Mode” click the HIGHLIGHTED RED BUTTON.

STEP 5 - FREQUENCY SEPARATION REVIEW

  1. Zoom in and out to determine if everything looks good
  2. Keeping the Assist B&W layer on, turn on and off each Retouch Assist layers to make sure inconsistencies have been fixed at all levels of contrast
  3. You can do more cleaning up by going into each layer and continuing previous steps
  4. READY? Click Stop to execute these instructions.
  5. When you are done with this step click the PLAY button (►) at the bottom of the Actions panel or if your Action panel is in “Button Mode” click the HIGHLIGHTED RED BUTTON.

6 - FREQUENCY SEPARATION LAYERS MERGE

  1. If you like the results, click Continue to MERGE the FREQUENCY SEPARATION into one layer.
  2. If you don't like the results, you can continue working on the Frequency Separation layers
  3. Or you can start over by going into the History panel, scrolling to the top and clicking the snapshot, "FREQUENCY SEPARATION - before.

STEP 7 - FREQUENCY SEPARATION COMPLETE!

  1. If you like the results, you’re done with this Action.
  2. If there are areas of your subject’s face that look too soft or flat, use a soft black brush with a FLOW 5%, and paint on the layer mask over the areas to bring back original detail.
  3. If you still don’t like the results, go to History Snapshots, click “FREQUENCY SEPARATION - before” and then re-run the action.
  4. When you are done with this step, you're ready to move on to the next Action!

B3 - LOCAL DODGE & BURN

**PRO MASKS & RETOUCH ASSIST TOOLS REQUIRED FOR THIS ACTION

  1. If you haven’t run the Actions, "PRO MASKS" and "RETOUCH ASSIST TOOLS", click Stop, run them and then return to this Action.
  2. If you’ve already run them, Continue.

STEP 1 - EVEN OUT HIGHLIGHTS (Dodging)

  1. Use the Assist layers to identify problem areas.
  2. In the Dodge layer mask, use a soft brush with OPACITY 100%, FLOW 1%, color WHITE.
  3. Paint to even-out tonal inconsistencies.
  4. Use multiple strokes to gradually bring up the highlights.
  5. READY? Click Stop to execute these instructions.
  6. When you are done with this step click the PLAY button (►) at the bottom of the Actions panel or if your Action panel is in “Button Mode” click the HIGHLIGHTED RED BUTTON.

STEP 2 - EVEN OUT SHADOWS (Burning)

  1. Use a soft brush with OPACITY 100%, FLOW 1%, color WHITE
  2. Paint shadows to even-out tonal inconsistencies
  3. Use multiple strokes to gradually bring up the shadows
  4. READY? Click Stop to execute these instructions.
  5. When you are done with this step click the PLAY button (►) at the bottom of the Actions panel or if your Action panel is in “Button Mode” click the HIGHLIGHTED RED BUTTON.

STEP 3 - ADJUST OPACITY

  1. Control the intensity of the effect by adjusting the opacity of the Group.
  2. READY? Click Continue to execute the above instructions.
  3. When you are done with this step click the PLAY button (►) at the bottom of the Actions panel or if your Action panel is in “Button Mode” click the HIGHLIGHTED RED BUTTON.

STEP 4 - LOCAL DODGE & BURN COMPLETED!!

  1. Make adjustments by opening the group and tweaking masks, adjustments and opacities to optimum effect!

  2. When you are done with this you're ready to move on to the next Action!


B4 - DEPTH CONTOURING

PRIOR ACTIONS REQUIRED FOR THIS ACTION

  1. This Action requires you to first run the PRO MASKS & RETOUCH ASSIST actions. It also needs a main image layer named “RAW PROCESSED” (created by the RAW PROCESSING action)

  2. If you haven’t run these Actions, click Stop, run the Actions and then return to this Action.

  3. If you’ve already run them click Continue.

STEP 1 - PAINT ON ADDITIONAL HIGHLIGHTS

  1. Use a soft brush with OPACITY 100%, FLOW 1-4%, color WHITE.
  2. Paint over highlight areas on the hair, forehead and cheeks to further sculpt, contour and increase dimension of your subject.
  3. Use multiple strokes to gradually bring up the highlights.
  4. Use Face Topography in RETOUCH ASSIST TOOLS to visualize the shape and guide you to pulling out areas for 3D effect.
  5. READY? Click Stop to execute these instructions.
  6. When you are done with this step click the PLAY button (►) at the bottom of the Actions panel or if your Action panel is in “Button Mode” click the HIGHLIGHTED RED BUTTON.

STEP 2 - PAINT ON ADDITIONAL SHADOWS

  1. Use a soft brush with OPACITY 100%, FLOW 1-4%, color WHITE.
  2. Paint over shadow areas along the hairline, between brows and eyes and on existing shadows to further sculpt, contour and increase dimension of your subject.
  3. Use multiple strokes to gradually add depth and further sculpt, contour and increase dimension of your subject.
    Use Face Topography in RETOUCH ASSIST TOOLS to visualize the shape and guide you to shading back areas for 3D effect.
  4. READY? Click Stop to execute these instructions.
  5. When you are done with this step click the PLAY button (►) at the bottom of the Actions panel or if your Action panel is in “Button Mode” click the HIGHLIGHTED RED BUTTON.

STEP 3 - DEPTH CONTOURING COMPLETED!!

  1. Make adjustments by opening the group and tweaking masks, adjustments and opacities to optimum effect!

  2. When you are done with this you're ready to move on to the next Action!


B5 - RED SKIN REDUCER

STEP 1 - PAINT OVER SKIN AREAS THAT HAVE TOO MUCH RED

  1. Select the Paintbrush tool and set it to 100% OPACITY and 4% FLOW.
  2. Gently paint strokes where the skin is too red.
  3. READY? Click Stop to execute these instructions.
  4. When you are done with this step click the PLAY button (►) at the bottom of the Actions panel or if your Action panel is in “Button Mode” click the HIGHLIGHTED RED BUTTON.

STEP 2 - ADJUSTMENTS

  1. Adjust Opacity of RED SKIN REDUCER Layer to desired effect.
  2. For more control of the effect, double-click the layer icon, click the “Master” pulldown and select the Reds channel and adjust Saturation to taste.
  3. READY TO DO IT? Click Continue to execute the above instructions.

STEP 3 - RED SKIN REDUCER COMPLETED

  1. You can also tweak the layer mask at any time.
  2. And you can always adjust the intensity of the effect by adjusting the opacity of the layer.
  3. When you are done with this you're ready to move on to the next Action!

B6 - HOT SPOT REDUCER

**PRO MASKS & RETOUCH ASSIST TOOLS REQUIRED FOR THIS ACTION

  1. If you haven’t run the Actions, "PRO MASKS" and "RETOUCH ASSIST TOOLS", click Stop, run them and then return to this Action.
  2. If you’ve already run them, Continue.

STEP 1 - ADJUST OPACITY

  1. Increase opacity to reduce hotspots on subject.
  2. READY? Click Continue to execute the above instructions.

STEP 2 - HOT SPOT REDUCER COMPLETED

  1. Adjust the overall effect by changing the opacity of the “HOTSPOT REDUCER” layer.
  2. You can further adjust effect by double-clicking the layer icon and changing the Brightness level.
  3. Click Stop and when finished, move on to the next Action!

B7 - PRO LIPS

STEP 1 - PAINT ON LIP COLOR

  1. Use a soft white brush set to OPACITY 100% and FLOW 20%.
  2. Paint lightly on the LIP COLOR layer mask.
  3. READY? Click Stop to execute these instructions.
  4. When you are done with this step click the PLAY button (►) at the bottom of the Actions panel or if your Action panel is in “Button Mode” click the HIGHLIGHTED RED BUTTON.

STEP 2 - ADJUST THE COLOR

  1. Control the color of the effect by adjusting color settings.
  2. READY TO DO IT? Click Continue to execute the above instructions.

STEP 3 - ADJUST THE INTENSITY

  1. Control the intensity of the effect by adjusting the opacity of the Layer.
  2. READY TO DO IT? Click Continue to execute the above instructions.

STEP 4 - PRO LIPS COMPLETED

  1. You can adjust the color by double-clicking the LIP COLOR layer icon and tweaking the color.
  2. You can also tweak the layer mask at any time.
  3. And you can adjust the intensity of the effect by adjusting the opacity of the layer or the group.
  4. Click Stop and when finished, move on to the next Action!

B8 - PRO CHEEKS

STEP 1 - PAINT ON CHEEK COLOR

  1. Use a soft white brush set to OPACITY 100% and FLOW 1%.
  2. Paint lightly on the CHEEK COLOR layer mask.
  3. Paint over cheekbones to add rosy color.
  4. When completed, zoom out and adjust Opacity of layer to suit.
  5. READY? Click Stop to execute these instructions.
  6. When you are done with this step click the PLAY button (►) at the bottom of the Actions panel or if your Action panel is in “Button Mode” click the HIGHLIGHTED RED BUTTON.

STEP 2 - ADJUST THE COLOR

  1. Control the color of the effect by adjusting color settings.
  2. READY TO DO IT? Click Continue to execute the above instructions.

STEP 3 - ADJUST THE INTENSITY

  1. Control the intensity of the effect by adjusting the opacity of the Layer.
  2. READY TO DO IT? Click Continue to execute the above instructions.

STEP 4 - PRO CHEEKS COMPLETED

  1. You can adjust the color by double-clicking the LIP COLOR layer icon and tweaking the color.
  2. You can also tweak the layer mask at any time.
  3. And you can adjust the intensity of the effect by adjusting the opacity of the layer or the group.
  4. Click Stop and when finished, move on to the next Action!

B9 - PRO SKIN GLOW

STEP 1 - PAINT ON FACE

  1. Use a soft white brush set to OPACITY 100% and FLOW 100%.
  2. Paint lightly on the layer mask on the skin.
  3. Try not to paint on the lips, eyes, or hair.
  4. Don’t worry if it looks like too much, you will adjust intensity next.
  5. READY? Click Stop to execute these instructions.
  6. When you are done with this step click the PLAY button (►) at the bottom of the Actions panel or if your Action panel is in “Button Mode” click the HIGHLIGHTED RED BUTTON.

STEP 2 - ADJUST THE INTENSITY

  1. Control the intensity of the effect by adjusting its opacity.
  2. You can also focus the effect on the highlights by adjusting the white triangles in “This Layer” of “Blend If” settings.
  3. READY? Click Continue to execute these instructions.

STEP 3 - PRO SKIN GLOW COMPLETED

  1. You can adjust the color of the effect by double-clicking the layer icon to tweak the settings.
  2. You can also tweak the layer mask at any time.
  3. Click Stop to execute and move on to the next Action!

B10 - PRO EYES

STEP 1 - PAINT MASKS ON COLOR PART OF EYES (IRISES)

  1. Use a small soft brush with 100% OPACITY, 100% FLOW.
  2. Don't worry if they appear overly dramatic - you are masking at this point and can adjust intensity later.
  3. Be sure brush color is WHITE as you will be painting on a black mask.
  4. Paint over the color parts of the eyeballs (irises).
  5. READY? Click Stop so you can execute these instructions.
  6. When you are done with this step click the PLAY button (►) at the bottom of the Actions panel or if your Action panel is in “Button Mode” click the HIGHLIGHTED RED BUTTON.

STEP 2 - ADJUST IRIS BRIGHTNESS

  1. Adjust Opacity of Boost Iris Brightness layer to a natural level.
  2. READY TO DO IT? Click Continue to execute the above instructions.

STEP 3 - ADJUST COLOR & CONTRAST OF EYES

  1. When you click Continue below, a Curves window will open.
  2. Adjust the RGB curve to change brightness and contrast.
  3. Select each individual Color Channel curve (Red, Green, Blue) from the drop-down.
  4. Adjust the curve to add or take away color for each RGB Color Channel.
  5. READY TO DO IT? Click the Continue button below so you can execute the above instructions.

STEP 4 - SHARPEN IRISES

  1. When you click Continue below, a High Pass Filter window will open.
  2. Change the Radius to adjust sharpness.
  3. READY TO DO IT? Click the Continue button below so you can execute the above instructions.

STEP 5 - PAINT MASKS ON BLACK PARTS OF EYEBALLS (PUPILS and EDGES of IRISES)

  1. Use a very small soft brush with 100% OPACITY and 50% FLOW.
  2. Make sure the brush color is set to WHITE as you will be painting on a black mask.
  3. Paint on the black parts of the eyeballs (the center pupils).
  4. If the irises have black outside edges, paint the outer edges of the colored irises.
  5. Make sure you don’t paint into the white parts of the eyes!!!
  6. READY? Click Stop below to execute these instructions.

STEP 6 - PAINT ON WHITE PARTS OF EYES

  1. Use a very small soft brush with 100% OPACITY and 10% FLOW.
  2. Don't worry if they appear overly dramatic - you are masking at this point and can adjust intensity later.
  3. Make sure the brush color is set to WHITE as you will be painting on a black mask.
  4. Paint the white parts of the eyeballs in a circle around the bottom parts of the Irises to give them shape.
  5. READY TO DO IT? Click the Stop button below so you can execute the above instructions.

STEP 7 - ADJUST WHITES OF EYES

  1. Adjust Opacity of white parts of eyes.
  2. We recommend staying under 20% Opacity.
  3. READY? Click Continue below to execute these instructions.

STEP 8 - ADJUST OPACITY OF ENTIRE GROUP

  1. Adjust Opacity of entire PRO EYES group to desired effect.
  2. Tip: It helps to zoom-out of the image to see the big picture!

STEP 9 - PRO EYES COMPLETED!

For best results:

  1. Open the PRO EYES folder and adjust settings as needed.
  2. Adjust each layer’s effects by double-clicking and tweaking the settings.
  3. Or simply adjust the intensity of each layer or folder by adjusting the opacities.
  4. Click Stop to execute and move on to the next Action!

C - PRO RELIGHTING

PRIOR ACTIONS REQUIRED FOR THIS ACTION

  1. This Action requires you to first run the PRO MASKS & RETOUCH ASSIST actions. It also needs a main image layer named “RAW PROCESSED” (created by the RAW PROCESSING action)

  2. If you haven’t run these Actions, click Stop, run the Actions and then return to this Action.

  3. If you’ve already run them click Continue.


C1 - BACKGROUND EXPOSURE

**PRO MASKS & RETOUCH ASSIST TOOLS REQUIRED FOR THIS ACTION

  1. If you haven’t run the Actions, "PRO MASKS" and "RETOUCH ASSIST TOOLS", click Stop, run them and then return to this Action.
  2. If you’ve already run them, Continue.

STEP 1 - ADJUST AMOUNT OF BACKGROUND DARKENING

  1. Darken the background by setting the Exposure down 1/2 to 1 stop (-0.5 to -1.0)
  2. Click Continue to execute.
  3. When you have it set, click OK in the Layer Style dialog box to continue.

STEP 2 - BACKGROUND EXPOSURE COMPLETED

  1. You can make further adjustments by opening the group and tweaking masks, adjustments and opacities to optimum effect!
  2. To make a more subtle effect, reduce the Opacity of this layer.
  3. WHEN YOU ARE DONE WITH THIS STEP - You're ready to move on to the next Action!

C2 - BACKGROUND LIGHTS

STEP 1 - POSITION BACKGROUND LIGHT 1

  1. Resize and reposition Background Light 1.
  2. Try placing it next to and behind the dark side of your subject's face.
  3. IMPORTANT!!! - When done hit ENTER on your PC keyboard (RETURN on Mac).
  4. READY TO DO IT? Click Continue so you can execute the above instructions.

STEP 2 - ADJUST OPACITY & BLEND MODE OF LIGHT 1

  1. Adjust the Opacity Settings in the next window for desired effect.
  2. Set the Blend Mode - results are often best with Soft Light or Overlay - try them!

STEP 3 - POSITION BACKGROUND LIGHT 2

  1. Resize and reposition Background Light 2.
  2. Try placing it next to and behind the dark side of your subject's face.
  3. IMPORTANT!!! - When done hit ENTER on your PC keyboard (RETURN on Mac).
  4. READY TO DO IT? Click Continue so you can execute the above instructions.

STEP 4 - ADJUST OPACITY & BLEND MODE OF LIGHT 2

  1. This LIGHT is optional - results can be fantastic and more dramatic by setting Opacity to 0 - try it!
  2. Adjust the Opacity Settings in the next window for desired effect.
  3. Set the Blend Mode - results are often best with Soft Light or Overlay - try them!

C3 - BACKGROUND TEXTURE

PRIOR ACTIONS REQUIRED FOR THIS ACTION

  1. This Action requires you to first run the PRO MASKS & RETOUCH ASSIST actions. It also needs a main image layer named “RAW PROCESSED” (created by the RAW PROCESSING action)

  2. If you haven’t run these Actions, click Stop, run the Actions and then return to this Action.

  3. If you’ve already run them click Continue.

STEP 2 - ADD BACKGROUND TEXTURE LAYER

  1. In next Dialog Window, Open the “Background Textures” folder included in your download.
  2. Select the Background Texture and press Place.
  3. Stretch and position the background to cover the entire image.

STEP 3 - ADJUST DEPTH-OF-FIELD

  1. In this next step, a dialog box for “Gaussian Blur” will appear.
  2. Adjust the amount of Blur to reflect your desired Depth-Of-Field.
  3. Don’t worry, this is a non-destructive Smart Filter effect that can be adjusted or turned off at anytime just by double-clicking Gaussian Blur under the Background Texture layer.

READY TO DO IT? Click Continue to execute the above instructions.

STEP 4 - ADJUST BACKGROUND COLOR

  1. A dialog box will appear with “Background Color” - Click OKAY - it will bring up an adjustment window for Color Balance.
  2. Adjust the color to taste.
  3. Try to make the background color compliment the colors of subject’s eyes, hair, face, etc.

READY TO DO IT? Click Continue to execute the above instructions.

STEP 4 - ADJUST BACKGROUND SATURATION

  1. A dialog box will appear with “Background Hue/Saturation” - Click OKAY - it will bring up an adjustment window for Hue Saturation.
  2. Adjust the color Saturation to taste.
  3. Try to make the background color compliment the colors of subject’s eyes, hair, face, etc.

READY TO DO IT? Click Continue to execute the above instructions.


A3 - RETOUCH ASSIST TOOLS

USING RETOUCH ASSIST TOOLS

  1. You can use this group for FREQUENCY SEPARATION, LOCAL DODGE & BURN & DEPTH CONTOURING.
  2. These tools are designed to help you see inconsistencies in skin texture, luminosity and transitions.
  3. Always keep this group at the top when retouching.
  4. Keep the B&W group on when using this tool.
  5. Select each of the Contrast Layers to zero in on transitions between Highlights, Mids and Shadows.
  6. Turn on and off these layers to identify areas that need to be retouched.
  7. Turn on and off the Face Topography to reveal shapes of transitions you may want to smooth out.
  8. When you are done retouching, you can delete this group

USING THE CONTRAST LAYERS IN RETOUCH ASSIST TOOLS

  1. To make the subject look beautiful, the retouching goal is to create soft, smooth transitions between shadows and highlights.
  2. Contrast Layers help you see irregular transitions.
  3. For each Contrast Layer, try turning on and off Face Topography - this helps you see the transitions easier and look for irregularities.
  4. Depending if you are working between highlights and midtowns, or midtones and shadows, you can select the different Contrast Layers to see the transitions.
  5. You may also want to tweak the Contrast Adjustment Layers to best isolate transitions (see below).